A law enforcement consultant argued that the capacity of the Seattle Police Department to half would not necessarily be disastrous.
SEATTLE – The Capitol Hill Organized Protest, known as CHOP, may be gone, but one of the demands protesters demanded – dropping the police department – continues to be a battle for the mayor, police chief and city council.
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and Chief of Police Carmen Best agree that change is necessary. What they disagree with is what that change will look like.
Best released a public letter and video on Friday demanding a 50% reduction of her budget neither realistic nor rational. The call to cut the budget started on Capitol Hill after protesters successfully took over six city blocks that managed to keep the police out for weeks. Protesters want the funds redistributed to other social services.
RELATED: When Protestants Shout “Defend the Police,” What Does It Mean?
If these cuts occurred, Best warned of massive layoffs and delayed response times of 911.
“You would have an increase in response times and some calls would only be answered,” said Bob Scales, a law enforcement consultant.
Scales said a 50% cut would increase 911 times, but the former Seattle city secretary says massive cuts wouldn’t necessarily be disastrous.
Simply put, he says that the police budget is and always has been massive. Seattle police budget is currently about $ 400 million.
Libra said he could see cuts to rarely used units such as harbor patrol and mounted police.
“These specialized units provide high-tech services that are good to have but rarely used,” Scales continued.
A deep watch list of highly paid top fairs can also be considered.
“It’s a significant expense and it’s really something that you can reduce without reducing any basic police services,” Scales said.
RELATED: Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan Responds to CHOP Handling and to Calls for Policing
The floor from the first day has been sympathetic to protesters but will not accept a number when it comes to reducing police funding.
“The target numbers themselves are not responsible unless you look at the features. What the police should do versus maybe what others can and should do, “Durkan said.
The mayor and the chief continue to talk about this issue, but the decision will be taken by the council. Seven out of the nine council members say they will support cutting the police budget in half.